GAO Recommends Intergovernmental Agreements between Dept. of Homeland Security and Border Tribes

Here is the report.

The summary:

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is coordinating in a variety of ways with tribes, such as through joint operations and shared facilities and Operation Stonegarden—a DHS grant program intended to enhance coordination among local, tribal, territorial, state, and federal law enforcement agencies in securing United States borders. However, the Border Patrol and tribes face coordination challenges. Officials from five tribes reported information-sharing challenges with the Border Patrol, such as not receiving notification of federal activity on their lands. Border Patrol officials reported challenges navigating tribal rules and decisions. Border Patrol and DHS have existing agreements with some, but not all, tribes to address specific border security issues, such as for the establishment of a law enforcement center on tribal lands. These agreements could serve as models for developing additional agreements between the Border Patrol and other tribes on their specific border security coordination challenges. Written government-to-government agreements could assist Border Patrol and tribal officials with enhancing their coordination, consistent with practices for sustaining effective coordination. DHS established an office to coordinate the components’ tribal outreach efforts, which has taken actions such as monthly teleconferences with DHS tribal liaisons to discuss tribal issues and programs, but does not have a mechanism for monitoring and overseeing outreach efforts, consistent with internal control standards. Such monitoring should be performed continually; ingrained in the agency’s operations; and clearly documented in directives, policies, or manuals to help ensure operations are carried out as intended. Implementing an oversight mechanism could help enhance DHS’s department-wide awareness of and accountability for border security coordination efforts with the tribes while identifying those areas that work well and any needing improvement.

 

This entry was posted in Author: Matthew L.M. Fletcher, Research and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to GAO Recommends Intergovernmental Agreements between Dept. of Homeland Security and Border Tribes

  1. Reblogged this on Looking Back Woman-Suzanne Dupree blog and commented:
    Turtle Talk keeping us informed….!

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